By Anthony Caruso III
Stedman Bailey, who was shot in the head twice last Nov. in Miami in a drive-by shooting, will return to West Virginia in the fall. Bailey will serve as a graduate assistant coach this fall for the West Virginia Mountaineers football team.
Bailey was home for Christmas, then began to run routes in April. During the spring, the Los Angeles Rams released him — but he doesn’t consider his career over yet.
“First of all, I would like to thank the Los Angeles Rams organization, my teammates, coach Jeff Fisher, general manager Les Snead and the ownership for the way they have taken care of me and my family since they drafted me,” he said. “They’re a first-class organization and made me feel like part of the family, especially during the past few months, which have been a tough time.
“Moving forward, I would like to thank West Virginia University, especially coach Dana Holgorsen and athletic director Shane Lyons for making this opportunity available. Even though my playing career isn’t over yet, this gives me more time to heal so I can make a return. However, it is important to me to finish my degree. I loved my time as a Mountaineer football player and I look forward to working with coach Holgorsen and the Mountaineer football program.”
Bailey was previously a player for the team during the 2010-12 seasons. He had 210 receptions for 3,218 yards and 41 touchdowns, before declaring early for the NFL Draft. He was drafted in the third-round of the 2013 NFL Draft.
In the NFL with the Rams, when they were the St. Louis Rams, he had 59 receptions for 843 yards and two touchdowns.
With the Mountaineers, he’ll be a full-time student as he works towards his multidisciplinary studies degree.
“I know Stedman is very disappointed that he isn’t able to play football at this time,” Holgorsen said. “However, I am glad that he is going to turn an unfortunate situation into a positive one by coming back to WVU as a student assistant coach and more importantly finishing his degree.
“He was an important part of our football program as a player, and I look forward to him being with us once again. Like we say here — once a Mountaineer, always a Mountaineer.”
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